How ‘Saturday Night Life’ Gives Preferential Treatment to Pete Davidson

Pete Davidson has made a lot of headlines lately, only they’re not funny. Trouble has been brewing at Saturday Night Live, where castmates complain he gets preferential treatment, while Davidson himself complains the other cast members treat him like he’s “dumb.” 

This has caused no small amount of ill will among the cast, although John Mulaney is trying to cover for him and smooth things over. If Davidson isn’t careful, he could find himself banned from the show in the worst-case scenario.

How Pete Davidson got famous 

Pete Davidson smiling in front of a repeating background
Pete Davidson | Steve Granitz/WireImage/Getty Images

Davidson, 26,  has been on Saturday Night Live since 2014. He experienced trauma at an early age, when his father, a New York City firefighter, died in the World Trade Center during the Sept. 11 attacks. He took up stand-up at age 16 on a dare, and that became a way of coping with his personal pain.

He began making himself known via several MTV shows, including Failosophy, Guy Code and Wild N’ Out with Nick Cannon. He appeared on Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and when he was cast on SNL, he was the first cast member to be born in the 1990s. One of his notable early sketches featured him and Dwayne Johnson trying to suck poison out of each other after being shot with darts. 

Eventually, Davidson also became known for frequent appearances in tabloid headlines, particularly regarding his dating life with his ex, Ariana Grande. Davidson’s Wikipedia entry includes a disclaimer that there is also a Pete Davidson entry for a song by Grande. That’s the kind of pop culture crossover few celebrities achieve.

Lately, however, Davidson has been gaining attention for undesirable reasons. 

What’s wrong on ‘Saturday Night Live?’

“Sources” of the gossip column Page Six say other cast members are not amused that Davidson seems to get all kinds of preferential treatment even though he often bashes the show himself.  He got time off to shoot the Suicide Squad sequel and to attend friend Ricky Velez’s wedding. Other people don’t get such breaks, according to the sources, who have also criticized Davidson for not pulling his weight on the show.

For his part, Davidson is not pleased with his position on the show himself, saying in an interview: “I personally think I should be done with that show because they make fun of me. They think I’m f–king dumb … I have a weird feeling in that building where I don’t know whose team they’re playing for, really; if I’m the joke or I’m in on the joke.” 

Increasingly, this appears to be a situation where Davidson ought to be careful what he wishes for, or he just might get it. Luckily, he has a famous friend in his corner.

Can Pete Davidson and ‘SNL’ be saved? 

Mulaney recently hosted SNL and has tried to stick up for Davidson. There is typically an afterparty after an SNL broadcast, but Davidson didn’t show up.

In a follow-up report, Page Six said cast members Chris Redd, Aidy Bryant and Bowen Yang were”fuming about Davidson, but Mulaney stuck up for him, saying, “SNL can be very cutthroat sometimes… And while Pete is not doing himself any favors right now, the cast should take care of each other.”

Many a host, musical guest and even a former cast member has found himself banned from the show, most notably Chevy Chase. Although he was the first person to become famous on the show, he found himself banned from hosting after he struck Cheri Oteri during a sketch gone wrong. 

It’s too early to tell if Davidson will go down that road, but it may take more than John Mulaney to smooth over all the ruffled feathers. 

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